Keep calm and prepare for more regulation
Jan-Henrik Svensson, CEO, Beamex
With the world grappling with break-neck technological innovation, a rising population and the need to do more with less, could regulations emerge as the key to guiding future growth?
Does the world need more regulation? That was the question posed to me by a journalist recently as we talked about the toughening regulatory environment across the globe. And truthfully, I had to say there is no easy answer to hand.
As a believer in the free market, I could say that regulation is wrong and that we must not curtail the spirit of innovation and enterprise that has fuelled our economic systems so far. But at the same time, as someone who works in the calibration field, I also see first-hand the role regulations play in ensuring a more transparent world for all.
From food to manufacturing, and even pharmaceuticals, we live in a time where systems are so interconnected that no region can live independently. The world order thrives on knowing that every component of this global machine is doing its part. Regulations and the standards they set play a significant role in making this come about. The certainty they provide ensures that you can drink a can of soda, drive a car, or even shop at your favourite brand, knowing that it lives up to your ideals.
This certainty becomes even more important considering how fast our world changes. Technological innovations like the rise of AI and biotechnology, the pressures brought about by climate change, and evolving globalisation trends have incentivised humanity to develop new products and services, think up radically different forms of doing business, and overturn long-established conventions. We are at a point where advances are coming up faster than we can find uses. In such a situation, having the proper regulations in place to create the best and most significant possible impact is what I would enthusiastically argue for.
One example I have been following is the EU’s plans to strengthen regulations requiring companies to justify their claims about ‘green’ products and services or face penalties. This is a long-overdue move. A survey conducted by the European Commission found that only half of European consumers trust producers’ claims about the environmental performance of their products. By standardising climate reporting, these proposed regulations will effectively slash greenwashing, forcing organisations to walk the talk on climate action. Similar regulation is underway in the US and China.
Regulations should be seen as opportunities
Climate action is one of many places where the regulatory environment gets tougher. Big tech, energy, pharma, and manufacturing are seeing an impact, too, as governments and industries introduce measures designed to create a more sustainable future. The ripple effects will be felt in many ways.
So, is the prospect of increased regulation a bad thing? At Beamex, we work with a wide range of industries to ensure that their processes and systems are calibrated and working to code. This has allowed me to interact with business leaders across the board, and I hear optimism when I discuss this issue with them.
They see regulation as an opportunity to standardise processes and ways of working, allowing for increased ease of business. For instance, I hear discussions on how the EU and US climate disclosure regulations might complement each other, allowing industries to comply with different requirements and enable seamless cross-border trade. The prospect of regulations around data, in particular, is firing up ideas of developing industry-wide data ecosystems that companies can delve into to increase efficiencies and profitability.
Yes, more regulations are coming. The key is not to treat them as a threat but as an opportunity to improve. We should not look at regulation as something we do merely because it is mandated. We should evaluate how it helps enhance the value and sustainability of the materials we produce and consume and then actively explore how we can develop new business models and solutions to create a safer world.
At Beamex, we will be doing our part to enable this. As calibration experts, we are helping the industries with which we work to comply with existing standards and regulations. I see us using this data to increase transparency across sectors, allowing stakeholders, including businesses, regulators, and governments, to trust the measurements and implement the proper regulations needed to achieve the most significant possible impact.
We can guide the world towards a more sustainable future by acting now. Get in touch if you want to explore this further.
You might also find interesting
For a safer and less uncertain world
Welcome to our series of topical articles where we discuss the impact that accurate measurement and calibration has on the world and our everyday lives.